Avengers: Infinity War

Avengers: Infinity War ★★★★

As a die-hard fan of the Marvel comics and an ardent watcher & critic of the Marvel films, I had just two wishes in my mind as I walked into the theater:

1) Oh God, please o please- don't make Thanos funny.

2)Oh God, please o please- give me something unpredictable.

Over the years I'd passed my initial stage of excitement and nerdgasms over the inception of the Marvel Universe and had started to grow tired of the formulaic plotlines and forced humour (this happened somewhere along Age of Ultron). And although among the last few installments there were a few that caught my attention, none of them really managed to give me the amount of euphoria that the first Avengers did.

The first main problem I had with Marvel movies was their overuse of humour. Yes, Marvel is supposed to be lighter and funnier. And DC is supposed to be darker. But it seemed as though the creators took these presuppositions too far. In many cases Marvel movies had humour sprinkled throughout even in the climactic action sequences which were supposed to add a sense of urgency to the story. Marvel continuously made a habit of sacrificing intensity for comedy.

A perfect example of this is the scene in Avengers where Hulk smashes Loki. This scene is probably one of the most popular ones in the movie and has even become a sort of iconic moment, with even a few running jokes about it in future installments. Like everyone else in the theater, I too laughed my ass of when I saw this scene. But in retrospect I find that this single scene manages to shred every ounce of threat that the character Loki had built up throughout the movie. The fact that this villain (who is supposed to be a threat against The Avengers) could be beaten up by a single member of the group so quickly- emasculated Loki in our eyes, turning him from the villainous God of Mischief to a mere tool for cinematic humour. The climactic "dance-off" scene in Guardians of the Galaxy is also an example. Although to be fair, Ronin never brought enough interest or intensity in the first place.

In the comics the humour has always been spread out depending on the characters. Spidey (not Peter Parker) and Deadpool are characters you could always expect to be saying something funny. Iron man was more of a sarcastic smartass but got serious when the situation arose. Characters like Thor and Captain America had more or less serious tones. But in the movie, literally every character had the same kind of one-liners. This not only felt forced but also stripped away any sort of personalities that the heroes could've had. Who is the serious person in The Avengers? Nobody. Everyone is a funny guy. And the sad thing was that not even the villains were exempt from this.

This is why ever since Thanos had been introduced, I'd been hoping that he would finally be the Marvel villain who not only posed enough of a threat but also added a much needed seriousness and intensity to the film.

Avengers: Infinity War has many comedic dialogues throughout its runtime, like any other Marvel movie.

But ladies and gentlemen, not once does Thanos crack a joke.

In a universe that has been defined not only by its abundance of superpowered beings but also its humour, this is a statement in and of itself. Marvel has finally created a marvelous villain. But it is not the lack of humour that makes him marvelous. The majority of this movie has been dedicated to developing Thanos as a character. We are given ample information about why he does what he does, his philosophies, his emotions. The creators do a fantastic job of molding Thanos into a complex figure who has clear, intellectual motivations for everything he does. And of course, hats off to Josh Brolin for knocking the role out of the park! He made this movie his own.

The second aspect I started despising about Marvel films is it's formulaic plotlines. The movies had just become way too predictable. I remember going into Civil War expecting something unpredictable to happen ( like in the comics) and leaving the theater rather underwhelmed. For me it didn't matter how well crafted the sets or action sequences were. They just weren't intellectually stimulating anymore.

Avengers: Infinity War fixes this problem as well. Towards the ending the film not only grows incredibly exciting but nail-biting as well. And the climax itself is sure to leave the audience with more questions than answers.

This movie is gorgeous to look at, has some amazing action sequences and does an impeccable job of setting up a foundation for the second part of the film. It does get a bit slow and congested at times, but it is beyond a doubt a film of epic proportions and one that will undoubtedly be revered as a superhero classic in the years to come.

There are so many aspects of this film that I wish to write about and discuss but alas, Thanos demands my silence. I am just glad that my two wishes were fulfilled. It will be a daunting task to keep these spoilers to myself till more people watch the movie, but like the man himself says, "The hardest choices require the strongest wills".

Vichu Vivek liked these reviews